A woman who was one of the survivors in the fifth-floor balcony collapse in 2015 that killed six college students in Berkeley, California, died Saturday night after suffering a stroke earlier in the week, according to a report.
The Irish Times reported that Aoife Beary, 27, was studying at Oxford Brookes University in England. The collapse badly injured Beary and she became an advocate for holding companies responsible for poor construction. She made an emotional appearance in front of California lawmakers after the collapse and told them her life will never be the same.
Beary, who is from Dublin, was with a group of friends celebrating her 21st birthday when the balcony gave way, according to the Mercury News. She suffered organ lacerations, a traumatic brain injury, broken arms and jaw. She underwent emergency, open-heart surgery at the time. Reports said it was not clear that her death was tied to injuries she suffered.
The crowded fifth-floor balcony broke off an apartment building and dumped 13 people 50 feet onto the pavement. In addition to the six killed, seven were seriously hurt. The students were largely from Ireland. It’s a tradition for Irish students to visit the San Francisco Bay Area for the summer to work at tourist spots and enjoy the break. The Mercury News reported that investigators later found water damage in the wooden support beams on the balcony.
“Aoife dealt with the devastating impact of her accident with great bravery and fortitude,” Joe Carthy, the University College Dublin dean, said in a statement. “She will be greatly missed by her family and wide circle of friends.”
The Associated Press contributed to this report